Music Machine is one of the holy grails for Atari 2600 collectors. It’s one of the many R10’s for the system, in no doubt mostly because the game was exclusively sold through religious bookstores.
The Music Machine franchise is, well… I’ll quote directly from Wikipedia:
Music Machine is a series of children’s Christian musical albums that were made by Candle and Agape Force that all took place in a “Land Called Love,” Agapeland. Most of these were released on Birdwing/Sparrow Records. Music Machine recordings usually centered around Stevie and Nancy’s adventures in Agapeland (along with Mr. Conductor and the Music Machine itself). The album titled Music Machine Club Fun Album centered around the characters known as Sloops that were introduced on the Dove Award winning Music Machine II: All About Love.
According to AtariAge, some collectors claim to have purchased the 2600 game in a bundle with the album (but has never been proven).
Some nice background from the seller too:
I was a game developer at Epyx where I worked on Summer Games, Winter Games, California Games for the 2600. When Epyx folded, it was bought out by Bridgestone Media Group. I went with that purchase. Bridgestone had some video projects with the Agapeland people who made the Music Machine songs and such. I was creating educational software using Agapeland intellectual property (specifically the mouse characters from the Amazing Book). I discovered an old box of sample items from Agapeland including a child’s bowl, cup, organizer, stuffed animals, and the Music Machine cartridge. When I eventually left the company, I was allowed to keep these items as memorabilia. That was 10-11 years ago. I guess I’ve kept it (aside from my natural pack-rat tendencies) because it has historical value aside from its rarity. It’s the world’s first religious video game. I several years ago I took pictures before and posted them on the net (you can see them on AtariAge in the rarity section). Back then it still had a store sticker on it that read: “For Display Only” That sticker has since fallen off and been lost. I’m not sure why I never opened the box. Mostly because I had heard about the value of “unopened” and I was able to download an emulator ROM that astified my curiosity about the game. I guess that’s a moral about how emulation can help preserve history: it keeps historical items from getting used up.
How it surfaced now: I’m in the process of moving, and we’ve been going though our stuff looking for what to get rid of. My teenage son went on eBay and Google to see what we could get for some of our old video games, and discovered the information here at AtariAge (Thanks!). Needless to say we were pretty excited! However, we couldn’t find it! No matter how we searched, it was nowhere to be found. We searched literally every box in every closet and still couldn’t find it. We has almost come to the conclusion that it had been thrown away. We were looking through the boxes under my bed one more time, when I asked my son Andrew if he could see any other boxes under the bed. He said yes! There was one small box that had been pushed back behind the others that we had never searched. He pulled it out and there it was! Our treasure!
Epic Gameplay Video: